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About Cliff Kayser

Cliff is an experienced organization development (OD) consultant, executive coach, and leadership trainer overseeing Polarity Partnerships' east coast operations out of Washington, DC. In 2017, Cliff became a founding partner of the 501(c)3 organization the Institute for Polarities of Democracy and in 2018 the healthcare coaching/consulting firm, SixSEED Partners. Cliff is a faculty member at American University's Master's in OD and KEY Executive programs and is a Coaching Fellow for George Mason's Accredited Coach Training Program under the Center for the Advancement of Well-being. His past work experience includes VP of Organizational Development and Training for The National Cooperative Bank, Senior OD Consultant for The Washington Post, and Corporate Manager of Human Resources (HR) and Training for The Washington Post Company. Cliff earned Master's Degrees in OD (2007) and HR Management (1998) from The American University and his Coaching Certification from Georgetown's Executive Leadership Coaching Program in (2008). He is a PCC (Professional Certified Coach) and a graduate of the 2-year Polarity Mastery program (2010), and has served as the program dean since 2014.

The Coming Wave: Technology, Power, and the Future of Society

By |2024-07-01T16:55:30-04:00July 1st, 2024|Polarity Thinking|

On July 31st, I’m presenting at the Chesapeake Bay Organization Development Network Learning Series on the topic of “Technically Unsolvable Interdependencies.” A big focus of that presentation will be on most important and challenging interdependencies of our time – including the interdependency between technology and humanity. (This was also a topic I spoke on in [...]

The True Gentleman: Another “Toxic Masculinity” Antidote

By |2023-12-03T06:40:55-05:00December 2nd, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Multarities|

After my friend, Joe Shymanski’s memorial service this past September, I found a bit of comfort one morning writing about one of his favorite poems, Desiderata. A handful of weeks later, I’m seeking comfort in the same way after my Father's passing on November 20th, 2023. It's been a rough fall grieving both of these [...]

Seeing Desiderata Through a Polarity/Multarity Lens

By |2023-12-12T13:04:53-05:00October 14th, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Multarities, Polarity Thinking|

“Desiderata” means “things wanted or needed.” Max Ehrmann, the poem’s author was a lawyer and poet from Terre Haute, Indiana, which happens to be my father’s home town. (NOTE: See component to this post -- a Cliff'sNOTE on The True Gentleman.) The first time I heard Desiderata (pronounced, [DI] + [ZID] + [UH] + [RAA] + [...]

Man’s (Our) Search for Meaning, by Victor Frankl

By |2023-09-29T09:22:40-04:00September 29th, 2023|Polarity Thinking|

Man’s (Our) Search for Meaning, by Victor Frankl (Summary neutralized for gender.) Summary Frankl survived the Holocaust and recounts his experiences, describing how it shaped his understanding and meaning for life, beginning with his own. Meaning can be found in work, in love for others, and in the courage required to endure suffering. Frankl didn’t [...]

Political Savvy and Persuasive Messaging: Aristotle’s 3-Pole Multarity of Ethos, Logos, and Pathos

By |2023-08-04T14:55:45-04:00August 4th, 2023|Multarities, Polarity Thinking|

Ethos, Logos, and Pathos and work in Aristotle’s rhetorical triangle -- an interdependency of three – in a powerful way to support political savvy and gain support for your ideas/initiatives. Each of the three dimensions represent important aspects of the Self And Other relationship in leveraging the “GP” (Greater Purpose) for the 3-poles: Political Savvy/Persuasive Messaging. Here [...]

Identifying Purpose to Address Depression

By |2023-06-19T11:26:35-04:00June 19th, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Polarity Thinking|

Kierkegaard succeed in “turning a somersault” over his “melancholy” (what they called “depression” in his day). The “cure” was purpose, in his case -- writing -- that made the day-to-day grind of life more tolerable and livable for others. Paradoxically, that made his own life more tolerable and livable. The bottom line: Help for others [...]

The Polarity of “Spirit And Self” – Through the Eyes of Kierkegaard

By |2023-06-19T11:23:09-04:00June 18th, 2023|Polarity Thinking, Self and Other|

Through Kierkegaard’s eyes, the “Spirt” and “Self” are one in the same. Therefore, despairing is a sickness in that “It” because it reveals the gap between the Self that is and the Self that reduces that Self’s full potentiation. “The self is a relation which relates to itself… A human being is a synthesis of [...]

What’s Whitelash?

By |2023-06-19T11:20:17-04:00June 17th, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Institute for Polarities of Democracy, Polarity Thinking|

From: American Whitelash: A Changing Nation and the Cost of Progress,” by Wesley Lowery Lowery, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist implicitly discusses polarities (“conundrums” or “tensions”) underlying our common conceptions of racism by probing recent surges in white-supremacist violence. The central premise of “Whitelash” is “a pull back on the rope”: “Each step toward a more [...]

Confidence to Risk And Humility to Take Ownership — Seventy-nine Years Ago

By |2023-06-07T18:21:05-04:00June 7th, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging|

On June 5, 1944, more than 5,000 ships waited to transport more than 150,000 soldiers to France before daybreak the following morning. General Dwight D. Eisenhower hoped these troops would push the German troops back across Europe. Eisenhower knew the fight to take Normandy would be brutal. The beaches these troops would assault were tangled [...]

The Institute for the Polarities of Democracy

By |2023-05-30T17:13:47-04:00May 30th, 2023|Both/And Polarity Leveraging, Institute for Polarities of Democracy, Polarity Thinking|

Created as a nonprofit social change think tank in 2017, the Institute for the Polarities of Democracy joins the tools and processes of decades of polarity approach development with the basic principles of democracy drawn from centuries of literature about freedom and governance under one unifying Polarities of Democracy theory, which the Institute uses to [...]

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